There are two documents of paramount importance to American history: the Declaration of Independence, which forged our national identity, and the United States Constitution, which set forth the framework for the federal government that is still in use today. While Independence Day is a beloved national holiday, fewer people know about Constitution Week, an annual commemoration of the living document that upholds and protects the freedoms central to our American way of life. This year, the annual celebration begins September 17, 2019.

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) initiated the Constitution observance in 1955, when the organization petitioned the U.S. Congress to dedicate September 17–23 of each year to the commemoration of Constitution Week. Congress adopted the resolution, and on August 2, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it into Public Law #915. The celebration’s goals are threefold: to encourage the study of the historical events that led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787; to inform people that the Constitution is the basis of America’s great heritage and the foundation of our way of life; and to emphasize U.S. citizens’ responsibility to protect, defend and preserve the Constitution.

The local Jose Maria Amador - Pleasanton chapter of the DAR will be sponsoring a Constitution Week poster contest for all ages. The local chapter will also be accepting Constitution Week Proclamations from the City Councils of Pleasanton, Dublin and San Ramon, setting up library displays about Constitution Week in the Pleasanton, Dublin and San Ramon libraries and supplying mini copies of the Constitution to selected schools. For more information on the poster contest, please visit https://www.josemaria.californiadar.org/index.php/about-us/contests-and-awards or contact Chapter Regent Debbie Janes at JMADAR.regent@gmail.com.

DAR has been the foremost advocate for the awareness, promotion and celebration of Constitution Week. This annual observance provides innumerable opportunities for educational initiatives and community outreach, two mission areas of crucial importance to the National Society’s work. By fostering knowledge of and appreciation for the Constitution and the inalienable rights it affords to all Americans, DAR helps to keep alive the memory of the men and women who secured our nation’s independence, whose bravery and sacrifice made possible the liberties we enjoy today.

For additional information about DAR and its programs, contact Debbie Janes at JMADAR.regent@gmail.com.